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Politico: Higher CAFE Standards to Create Jobs

By Darren Samuelsohn
Politico
Tough new fuel economy limits could help create 700,000 full-time jobs by 2030, including 60,000 in the auto industry, according to early findings from a coalition of green-minded investors and environmental groups.

Politico LogoTough new fuel economy limits could help create 700,000 full-time jobs by 2030, including 60,000 in the auto industry, according to early findings from a coalition of green-minded investors and environmental groups.

Boston-based Ceres said the employment boom would come if the Obama administration adopted this fall a 6 percent increase per year in Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards, which would roughly equal 62 miles per gallon by 2025.

"Less money spent at the pump means more money for the U.S. economy and more jobs," said Ceres spokesman Peyton Fleming. "The weaker the standard the fewer the jobs that will be created."

Ceres said a 6 percent increase in the fuel economy limits would save Americans $152 billion in the year 2030 at the gas pump compared with status quo regulations. That means $59 billion for the automobile industry to purchase the cleaner cars and another $93 billion to spread throughout the economy.

A final Ceres report that includes state-based jobs data will be released in late July, but the group sent its preliminary data Tuesday to the White House, EPA, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and California Air Resources Board — all the key agencies involved in negotiations over the new CAFE standards.

"We thought it was important to share these initial details," Angela Bonarrigo, director of Ceres's Washington office, told POLITICO.

Auto manufacturers and dealers slammed the White House on Monday after the Detroit Free Press and other news outlets reported that the administration has floated raising CAFE limits to 56.2 mpg by 2025. Environmental groups are still pushing Obama to go as high as 62 mpg.

The administration plans to issue draft standards in September.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story incorrectly described the time frame in which $152 million in savings would take place.